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Liposuction is one of the most common aesthetic operations performed in the United States and involves surgical removal of fat from the body.

Fat is eliminated from the body with liposuction, and this permanent removal creates a new starting point for your body contour. If you maintain an exercise regimen and a good diet following your liposuction procedure in Santa Barbara, you should expect to maintain your new “reset point” of a slimmer, more attractive body contour for many years to come.

With two cutting edge technologies, the use of VASER ultrasonic liposuction (also called LipoSelection®) and J-plasma, ionized helium skin tightening allows Dr. Lowenstein amazing abilities to slim, contour, and tighten patient bodies like never before. Removing fat and then tightening the skin overlying your new body contour provides a more youthful and overall tighter appearance than any other liposuction techniques.

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The VASER difference

The use of VASER ultrasonic liposuction in Santa Barbara allows Dr. Lowenstein amazing control and precision during his liposuction procedures. VASER represents the third generation in the evolution of ultrasound assisted liposuction, and is well known to be a definitive leader in this technology. VASER stands for Vibration Amplification of Sound Energy at Resonance. The VASER system consists of a generator of ultrasonic energy that connects to long thin probes that are very similar to the cannulas (tubes) used to remove fat in conventional liposuction techniques. Dr. Lowenstein’s ability to dial the ultrasound energy up and down is combined with the ability of different VASER probes to disperse the energy in different ways. This is because of special rings etched into the ends of the VASER probes which additionally modulate the ultrasonic energy. Most importantly, the ultrasonic energy is able to dislodge fat cells from surrounding blood vessels and connective tissue while avoiding damage to these adjacent structures. Liposuction following the application of VASER is more gentle, more precise, and less traumatic. This means less bruising and easier recovery. Because the structural connective tissue below the skin remains intact, skin retraction and accommodation to your new contour provides beautiful, natural results that are difficult to obtain without this cutting edge technology.

Expectations After Liposuction in Santa Barbara

The addition of VASER liposuction to our practice provides for a less involved, shorter, and easier recovery than conventional liposuction techniques have allowed. Following your liposuction in Santa Barbara with Dr. Lowenstein, you will need to wear the postoperative compression garment. This is important in that the skin needs to stay tightly against the underlying tissue to allow optimal healing and prevent fluid from collecting in areas that are not compressed. Significant pain is very unusual following liposuction, and you can expect to be relatively comfortable even immediately after surgery. Commonly, patients mention a burning type of sensation in the areas of liposuction treatment, though this has never been noted to be excessive. Showering is allowed on the day following surgery. You can expect to be back to work in as little as two or three days after Vaser liposuction in Santa Barbara, though significant exertion is usually postponed for about seven to ten days. Normal activity and driving may be performed as soon as you are comfortable. Two weeks after VASER liposuction, patients may return to the gym and their normal workout routines. Though immediate results are seen following VASER liposuction, final contour results can be expected at three to six months. The small scars that result from the tiny incisions will fade with time, usually over three to twelve months.

Who is a candidate for VASER liposuction?

The ideal liposuction candidate is at or near their ideal body weight, and has a mild to moderate amount of fat that they are looking to have removed. It is critical to remember that liposuction is not a means of weight loss, but liposuction is a great way to get rid of regions of fatty tissue that are unsightly. Liposuction is commonly performed in the following areas:
  • Upper abdomen
  • Lower abdomen
  • Flanks or love handles
  • Hips
  • Thighs
  • Knees
  • Chest
  • Male breast
  • Back
  • Neck

Where does VASER liposuction excel?

How is VASER Liposuction Performed?

The liposuction procedure begins in the consultation room on the morning of surgery. You will again confirm with Dr. Lowenstein the areas that you wish to be treated. Preoperative markings will be placed by Dr. Lowenstein around the areas of concern, and multiple circles may be used to delineate peaks or bulges of the most fat, not unlike a topographic map that shows mountains and valleys. Your incision sites will also be determined at this point and marked accordingly.

Dr. Lowenstein performs most of his liposuction under general anesthesia, although local anesthesia is an option in healthy patients with small areas of fat. In our AAAASF certified surgery center, you will be brought to the operating room and made comfortable while the appropriate anesthesia is administered. You may need to be rolled on your side to get the best access to the fatty areas, and since you are asleep during the procedure, this happens without your awareness and with the utmost gentle attention. Some surgeons prefer the shortcut of twisting your body into un-natural contours in order to shorten the procedure, but Dr. Lowenstein feels that actually repositioning you in order to completely expose the area to be treated reduces distortion of the fat and therefore reduces distortion in the outcome.

After cleaning your skin with a special beta-dyne solution to remove bacteria, sterile drapes are placed around the areas to be treated with liposuction. Small incisions are made in the pre-marked areas, and efforts are made to allow approach to the fat from at least 2 directions, preferentially near 90 degrees. This allows for the crosshatch technique which reduces postoperative irregularity and wave deformities. Through these incisions, narrow cannulas shaped like tubes with holes at the end are used to administer a solution to prepare the fat.

The administered solution contains saline as well as a small amount of epinephrine which helps your blood vessels in the area to constrict and be much less likely to bleed. The use of VASER technology further reduces blood loss during your liposuction procedure in Santa Barbara.Although some bruising is occasionally seen, Dr. Lowenstein has not seen postoperative bleeding complications in his liposuction patients. Another additive to the solution is Lidocaine, which acts as a short acting anesthetic. In patient who are not having general anesthesia, lidocaine is an important additive for the purposes of comfort. For those liposuction patients who are asleep and under general anesthesia, a minimal amount of lidocaine is needed and used, as too much lidocaine can cause serious problems. Unfortunate cases of death following liposuction have been seen in the news, and this is most often due to excess use of lidocaine by inexperienced physician. By limiting the lidocaine exposure, Dr. Lowenstein creates another level of safety for his patients not often seen in the plastic surgery community.

Following administration of the preparatory solution, a period of about 10 minutes is allowed to pass to maximize the effect of the epinephrine in the solution. Your fat is now ready for VASER ultrasonic treatment. Introduction of a particular VASER probe, based on the specific goals of your unique surgical plan, is performed through these same very small incisions. Variable ultrasonic energy, precisely controlled by the VASER machine, will be used to dislodge the fat from the adjacent tissues while maintaining these important non-fatty structures for optimal healing. This portion of the operation, though critically important, only takes a few minutes as the ultrasonic VASER technology is extremely efficient.

Now that the fat has been optimized for removal, it is time to perform the actual liposuction. Following VASER treatment, special cannulas, or tubes, are used to remove the treated fat. These cannulas have special designs and are made to be less traumatic than conventional liposuction tools. In cases where the fat is to be re-injected in other parts of the body for contouring, called fat grafting, very low suction and these atraumatic cannulas provide fat that is around 80% viable. This means that the fat grafts placed in areas that require more volume are more likely to be healthy and provide long term results.

Liposuction from two different directions allows a uniform evacuation of fat from the deep and superficial fatty layers and reduces the chance for lumpy irregularities. Called a crosshatch technique, in the allows for a uniform removal of fat increasing the likelihood for a smooth and natural result. The retention of the connective tissue below the skin is what sets VASER apart, and this aids in creating a most aesthetic outcome.

Following evacuation of the fat, the small incisions are closed with absorbable sutures and surgical tape. A compression garment is then placed to allow the skin to adhere to the underlying new contour during healing. You will then be gently woken from anesthesia and brought to the recovery area where you will find yourself in a comfortable recliner chair being cared for by Dr. Lowenstein’s experienced and caring nursing staff.

Skin tightening with liposuction in Santa Barbara

Liposuction is an effective way of removing fat, but many patients also complain of loose skin overlying their fatty areas. Conventional liposuction alone can’t be used in these regions because the resulting deflation would cause the skin excess to be problematic.

Dr. Lowenstein’s combination of two cutting edge technologies allows for a different and much better outcome. The use of VASER ultrasonic liposuction combined with the J-Plasma ionized helium beam provides optimal results in patients looking for tighter skin over areas of lipsction. VASER liposuction’s ability to retain the intact connective tissue below the skin aids in the skin’s ability to heal faster and tighter over the newly provided contour. The truly amazing ability for the J-Plasma beam to actually shrink skin allows Dr. Lowenstein to provide results even he could previously only imagine.

Even some patients who would previously need tummy tucks may now be treated with a combination of VASER liposuction and J-Plasma skin tightening to provide amazing results with only minimally invasive surgery, and tiny, well hidden incisions. Recovery from this procedure is vastly shorter, less painful, and less involved than recovery from conventional abdominoplasty, allowing for an early return to daily activities and even exercise in as little as two weeks. To see if you are a candidate for this minimally invasive means to a tighter tummy, call 805-969-9004 and schedule a consultation with Dr. Lowenstein.